Melbourne: A small butterfly or Chinese symbol on an ankle or lower back is no longer the choice of ink work for women, as they now opt for bigger and bolder tattoos. Tattoo artists have reported a rapid increase in the number of women getting full-sleeve tattoos and dramatic thigh and calf designs, media reported.

Stafford Tattoo owner Martina Tomanec said that society was changing and more people had the bravery to go big and prominent with tattoos. "Even three years ago, walking through Chermside, the amount of looks you would get! These days nobody looks twice, it's just becoming normal," she said.

Visible tattoos are leaving a permanent mark in some workplaces, with employers devising policies to stop workers showing them off. Tattoos on the inner-lip, which fade after a few months, are proving a hit at a new tattoo parlour.


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